Y is for Youtube

There’s been a trend lately for authors to make book trailers for their books, which are then posted to Youtube. And while this at first glance may seem an interesting or cool project, it loses impact when you realize some authors are relying on it to sell their book(s).

Let’s put aside how poorly done most of these are (because the indie community doesn’t have any issues with quality control at all) and focus instead on why. Why in the world would anyone think this would work? Especially a new author.

Just because you might see a John Grisham commercial on TV, this doesn’t mean anyone will bother looking up that same commercial on Youtube. And while they might watch it on his website, they’ve only found his website because, and this is important, they know who he is.

If he was some random person named, oh I don’t know, Denise McGee for example, she’d not get a whole lot of traffic to her site looking to see what her next release is. Because I haven’t made that name for myself, yet.

Not to say that someday I won’t, but right now it’d be a waste of my time and effort to put up a badly produced (not to mention how many use images and music they haven’t a right to) book trailer that only a handful of people will see.

And if my sole marketing strategy is to push this trailer onto other writers in the vain hopes they’ll retweet/like/forward/share with their friends and fans, then I really need to rethink what I’m doing.